Document - Cuba: further information on: arbitrary detention / harassment
EXTERNALAI Index: AMR 25/08/96
23 February 1996
Further information on UA 08/96 (AMR 25/01/96, 16 January 1996) and follow-ups (AMR 25/02/96, 17 January; AMR 25/05/96, 20 February; AMR 25/06/96, 22 February) - Arbitrary Detention / Harassment
CUBADr Leonel MOREJÓN ALMAGRO, lawyer and national organizer of Concilio Cubano
Lázaro GONZÁLEZ VALDÉS, deputy national organizer of Concilio Cubano
Mercedes PARADA ANTÚNEZ (f), deputy national organizer of Concilio Cubano
Reinaldo COSANO ALÉN, deputy national organizer of Concilio
new names:Dr René GÓMEZ MANZANO, lawyer, founder member of Concilio Cubano
Eugenio RODRÍGUEZ CHAPLE, prominent member of Concilio Cubano
Amnesty International has learned that Lázaro González Valdés was sentenced to 14 months' imprisonment at his trial on 22 February 1996 on charges of "desacato", "disrespect", and "desobediencia", "disobedience". The first charge is believed to relate to his failure to stop his activities on behalf of Concilio Cubano despite having received three official warnings to do so. The second charge is reportedly based on allegations that the family took some time to open the door when police went to arrest him. His lawyer was reportedly informed of the substance of the charges only an hour or two before the hearing and spoke to his client for the first time only minutes beforehand.
Dr Leonel Morejón Almagro is reportedly due to be tried today on as yet unknown charges in a municipal court in Plaza, Havana. As of last night, his lawyer had reportedly not been informed of the charges and had not been able to speak directly to Dr Morejón.
Mercedes Parada Antúnez has reportedly been transferred from hospital back to a detention centre. Reinaldo Cosano Alén is also believed to be still in detention. Another prominent founder member of Concilio Cubano, lawyer Dr René Gómez Manzano, who is also president of an unofficial lawyers' group called Corriente Agramontista, Agramontist Current, has also reportedly been in detention at the headquarters of the Departamento Técnico de Investigaciones (DTI), Technical Investigations Department, since 17 February. Eugenio Rodríguez Chaple, prominent member of Concilio Cubano, has also reportedly been in detention since 19 February. He is believed to be on hunger-strike, despite suffering from a stomach ulcer. It is feared that charges are imminent in all four cases.
Amnesty International believes that all six are prisoners of conscience detained solely because of their peaceful activities on behalf of Concilio Cubano.
FURTHER RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/faxes/express/ airmail letters in Spanish, otherwise English or in your own language:
- expressing concern at reports that Lázaro González Valdés has been sentenced to 14 months' imprisonment;
- expressing concern at reports of the continued detention of Dr Leonel Morejón Almagro, Mercedes Parada Antúnez, Reinaldo Cosano Alén, Dr René Gómez Manzano and Eugenio;
- requesting that they be given immediate access to defence counsel of their choice;
- urging the immediate and unconditional release of all six on the grounds that they are prisoners of conscience detained solely for their peaceful activities on behalf of Concilio Cubano.
Dr Juan Escalona Reguera
Fiscal General de la República
Fiscalía General de la República
San Rafael 3, La Habana, Cuba
Telegrams: Fiscal General, Havana, Cuba
Telexes: 511456 fisge
Faxes: + 53 7 333164
Salutation: Sr Fiscal General / Dear Attorney General
2) Minister of Foreign Affairs
Sr Roberto Robaina González
Ministro de Relaciones Exteriores
Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores
Calzada No. 360
Vedado, La Habana, Cuba
Telegrams: Ministro Relaciones Exteriores, Havana, Cuba
Telexes: 511122 / 511464 / 512950
Faxes: + 53 7 333085 / + 53 7 335261
Salutation: Señor Ministro / Dear Minister
3) Department of State Security
Departamento de Seguridad del Estado
La Habana, Cuba
Telegrams: Director, Villa Marista, Havana, Cuba
Salutation: Señor Director / Dear Sir
Cuban Journalists' Union (official body)
Unión de Periodistas de Cuba
Calle 23 No. 452
Granma (daily newspaper)
La Habana, Cuba
and to diplomatic representatives of CUBA accredited to your country.
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat, or your section office, if sending appeals after 15 April 1996.